Top Seed Companies: Replicate, Fondue, Fermat, Halo, Boddle

Our Investor Nicolas von Blottnitz shares the top-seeded companies to keep an eye on this week.

We see about 5,000 startups each week, and I want to give you a glimpse into how we at Headline think about trending tech companies and tracking new investment opportunities. In this post, I’m highlighting top tech companies that have announced or raised a seed round within the past week.

Replicate

EVA Growth Index:

Product:
API-enabled open-source models to embed text to image generation into any software product

Lead Investors:
Y Combinator

Total Raised:
Undisclosed

Comparables:
Dale-2, Midjourney

My Thoughts:
We have all seen the intriguing work of Dale-2 over the last two months. The shock, hype, and wow-effect of these is already in full decline, with the real long-term use case of this technology coming from embedding it in a useful/entertaining way into SaaS products, games, or other digital applications. This is what Replicate enables, which alongside the incredible EVA growth here, definitely makes it one to watch.

Fondue

EVA Growth Index:

Product:
Shopify plug-in that replaces discounts with cash-back offerings

Lead Investors:
Quiet Capital, Hanaco Venture Capital

Total Raised:
$10.5M

Comparables:
Rise AI

My Thoughts:
I like the idea of giving the choice to consumers what type of reward they would like for shopping with a given brand. Do you want a $30 discount, $45 off your next purchase, or something completely different? Fondue seamlessly enables this for the universe of almost 2M Shopify merchants.

Fermat

EVA Growth Index:

Product:
Platform that enables influencers to create their own micro-ecommerce stores with products of the brands they partner with

Lead Investors:
Courtside Ventures, Greylock, QED Investors

Total Raised:
$12M

Comparables:
Linktree, Instagram Shopping

My Thoughts:
We at Headline are incredibly bullish on the creator economy if you can’t tell by our portfolio (Cameo, Grin, Playbook App). Fermat has built one of the more seamless bridges I have seen to convert followers to customers of the brands’ that a creator partners with. Some early explosive EVA traffic growth as well.

Halo

EVA Growth Index:
No external sources showing growth

Product:
Online network to connect global scientists with start-ups to create the products of tomorrow

Lead Investors:
Asymmetric Capital Partners

Total Raised:
$2.6M

Comparables:
N/A

My Thoughts:
It is rare to have a technical founder be a great CEO as well and vice versus. Consequently, often the best founding teams consist of a great storyteller and a highly technical individual that can build a truly innovative product. Halo enables these two parties to partner, which should be incredibly important for the growth of the start-up ecosystem at large.

Boddle

EVA Growth Index:

Product:
Highly engaging digital games to teach K-12 students math

Lead Investors:
Atento Capital, Alpine Ventures

Total Raised:
$5.5M

Comparables:
Learnjoy, AppsChef

My Thoughts:
I’d love to see a future where kids and teenagers are as engaged in their education as they are in playing Halo. Boddle is one of the education providers that I have seen get there the closest, and looking at their EVA growth, they are definitely catching a fair amount of mind share.

Hi, I am Nicolas von Blottnitz, an Associate at Headline’s SF office focusing on Consumer, Fintech, and SaaS businesses. Since joining in 2018, I have led our investments in Tabnine, Polygon, Flockjay, Solid, and Grin.

What is the EVA Growth Index?
The EVA Growth index is a composite of third-party data sources around a company’s website traffic. The vertical green lines in the charts represent a point in time where the company raised outside capital.

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Nicolas von Blottnitz

Early-stage venture capitalist at the global venture firm Headline and passionate surfer.